2015 Result:
Conservative: 5929 (10.3%)
Labour: 15893 (27.6%)
Lib Dem: 1232 (2.1%)
SNP: 32736 (56.9%)
UKIP: 1757 (3.1%)
MAJORITY: 16843 (29.3%)

Category: Safe SNP seat

Geography: Scotland, Lothian. Part of the West Lothian council area.

Main population centres: Livingston, Broxburn, Addiewell, Fauldhouse, Polbeth.

Profile: A post-war newtown built in the 1960s to ease over-population in Glasgow. Livingston is an important retail centre and the largest private employer is BSkyB, who have a call centre based here. To the south the seat contains the smaller villages along the A71, and beyond that the moors of the Pentland Hills. The seat also includes HM Prison Addiewell.

Politics: Its best known past Member of Parliament is the former Foreign Secretary Robin Cook, a reknowned debater who resigned from the government over the Iraq war and died after suffering a heart attack while hill walking. His successor Jim Devine was embroiled in the expenses scandal, was banned from standing for Labour in 2010 and was subsequently jailed for his fraudulent expenses claims. Previously a safe Labour seat it fell to the SNP in 2015.

Current MP
HANNAH BARDELL (SNP) Born Craigshill. Educated at Broxburn Academy and Stirling University. Former head of communications for a gas and oil company. First elected as MP for Livingston in 2015.
Past Results
Con: 5158 (11%)
Lab: 23215 (48%)
LDem: 5316 (11%)
SNP: 12424 (26%)
Oth: 1794 (4%)
MAJ: 10791 (23%)
Con: 4499 (10%)
Lab: 22657 (51%)
LDem: 6832 (15%)
SNP: 9560 (22%)
Oth: 789 (2%)
MAJ: 13097 (30%)
Con: 2995 (8%)
Lab: 19108 (53%)
LDem: 3969 (11%)
SNP: 8492 (24%)
Oth: 1469 (4%)
MAJ: 10616 (29%)
Con: 4028 (9%)
Lab: 23510 (55%)
LDem: 2876 (7%)
SNP: 11763 (27%)
Oth: 657 (2%)
MAJ: 11747 (27%)

2015 Candidates
CHRIS DONNELLY (Conservative)
GRAEME MORRICE (Labour) Born 1959, Edinburgh. Educated at Broxburn Academy and Edinburgh Napier University. Leader of West Lothian council 1995-2007. MP for Livingston 2010 to 2015. PPS to John Denham 2010-2011.
CHARLES DUNDAS (Liberal Democrat) Contested Livingston 2010.
HANNAH BARDELL (SNP) Born Craigshill. Educated at Broxburn Academy and Stirling University. Head of communications for a gas and oil company.
Comments - 38 Responses on “Livingston”
  1. 2015 forecast for Livingston

    Lab 44
    SNP 35
    con 10
    LD 4
    Others 7

    I know at least a few people my own age here who support independence and I do not just invent constituency forecasts off the top of my head.

    There was a 16 point rise in the SNP vote in Almond Valley in May 2011.

  2. Prediction for 2015-
    Morrice (Labour)- 50%
    SNP- 29%
    Conservative- 9%
    Liberal Democrats- 7%
    UKIP- 2%
    Others- 3%

  3. The 16 point rise in Almond Valley is less striking when you remember that the SNP vote rose 13% nationwide. That doesn’t suggest a 7% swing is particularly likely to me, especially since in Westminster elections a fair proportion of independence supporters plump for Labour for tactical reasons. Bad blood over the referendum might end that, but it seems just as likely it might take independence off the radar and actually promote tactical voting.

  4. Edward, how come it took so long for your posts on here to come through, were you stuck in moderation?

  5. Yes, I was. Not entirely sure why, but as it was only a couple of hours I don’t see that as a great problem.

  6. The same thing has happened to Barnaby Marder and Tory today, but not others like myself, Joe R, Wolf and a few others.

  7. (neutral) prediction for 2015-

    lab- 42%
    SNP- 33%
    con- 13%
    lib- 9%
    UKIP- 3%

    The steady rise of pro-independence will see the gap for first and seconds close by a considerable amount here, but it will no doubt stay labour. The tories vote will pick up just before the next election as the liberal vote falls, UKIP may make a slight rise but at the end of the day they won’t have much success in Scotland.

  8. Sorry Robbie but can you show me where there rise of pro independence is as all the latest opinion polls show that the gap between the No and Yes campaigns is widening.
    The latest poll on the Scottish Parliament has Labour in the lead for the first time in a long time in both the constituencies 37 -35 and the list 35 -29.
    While taking nothing for granted, I think we are now beginning to see a steady decline in support for the SNP which will continue after the referendum.
    As a matter of interest are there any regular contributors out there who think a victory for the Yes campaign is now possible?

  9. This one will be close. I expect Labour to hold on, but not by much. If the SNP can win this they will be having a pretty good night, and will probably have doubled their representation at Westminster (I can think of precisely 5 more likely gains for them than here).

  10. Incidentally though, putting current Scottish polling through a UNS calculator apparently has the SNP winning 45 seats, with Labour reduced to 10, the Tories on 2, and the Lib Dems reduced to just Kennedy and Carmichael.


  11. To be clear – almost certain it won’t happen.

  12. If any Lib Dem of the current parliamentary party will be able to hold, it will be Kennedy. He still commands some respect from Labour supporters (although they may be those who simply view him as “not Clegg” in the same way the left of the Labour Party likes John Smith).

    I agree with you though – the projected SNP gains are overstated in my view and the “45ers” will fall back quite a way.

  13. There is absolutely no doubt that Carmichael will be re-elected either.

  14. Well yes. There are few Lib Dems who will definitely survive, but the two Scots are definitely among them.

  15. What do you mean by “current Scottish polling,’ Neil? I haven’t seen a dedicated Scottish poll asking Westminster VI for ages. Can’t recall one since the referendum to be honest, though it’s possible I may have missed one.

    Despite the obsessions of some over on the main site, the Scottish crossbreaks of UK-wide polls are not useful for projecting the result in 2015.

  16. There was one during the referendum campaign, but not since. It did show a slight SNP lead over Labour, but that would still translate into Labour winning more seats than the SNP since its vote appears to be distributed more efficiently & the SNP’s more evenly. Your point is a good one.

  17. It looks to me like the site I referenced add together the Scottish sub-samples of a number of national polls over the course of a week or so, and use the summed figures to make a poll with a full sized sample. Not sure how scientific this is, but there is no obvious serious flaw with the logic. Also not sure who is behind that site, or whether they may have an agenda, or what it may be. As I say, I think the conclusions drawn are utter fantasy, but it’s still an interesting piece.

  18. There are two major reasons why regional crossbreaks aren’t useful for projecting electoral outcomes in that region. One is sample size, which aggregating the results of several polls can correct for.

    The other is that a national poll is weighted according to the demographic profile of the whole country – the individual regions aren’t internally weighted to be properly representative of that region. That isn’t something that can be fixed regardless of how many polls you add together.

    Given the interest in the political landscape in Scotland post-2015, it’s surprising that there isn’t more dedicated Scottish polling, but then maybe that’s just a case of us anoraks projecting our interests onto everybody else.

  19. No Andy. I am stunned that there hasn’t been more constituency level polling for the GE. and I don’t wear an anorak

  20. “I am stunned that there hasn’t been more constituency level polling for the GE.”

    Rubbish. There has been more proper constituency level polling in this parliament than in all the preceeding ones put together. Constituency polls were basically voodoo until Ashcroft came along.

  21. Hey hemmelig i meant more constituency level polling in scotland. My bad. And wales too is underdone.

  22. And let us not discuss polling in northern ireland.

  23. Fair point.

    Though Ashcroft being mostly interested in outcomes for the Tories probably finds Scotland much less interesting.

    It’s arguable however that Scotland will be the key determinant of whether or not Labour can scrape a small majority.

  24. Yeh i agree mate.

  25. Prediction after todays Scottish poll:

    Labour – 39%
    SNP – 34%
    Conservative – 14%
    Libdem – 9%
    OTH – 4%

  26. The people of Livingston have had their eyes opened. Robin Cook was an excellent MP. His resignation over Iraq showed he wasn’t just following the party line.

    After his sudden death the constituency party took the constituents for granted. “They’ll vote Labour no matter what”, so they presented Jim Devine as Labour candidate. What an insult to the people of Livingston.

    Labour lost 10,000 votes, 10% of votes, between the GE 2005 and the by-election a few months later, while SNP gained 11% Other parties maintained their shares.

    There was a further % loss for Labour in 2010 and the Labour MPs record in parliament is questionable.

    This is now far from a safe Labour seat.

  27. If the SNP are going to win more seats than Labour in Scotland at GE 2015, then this seat will definitely be an SNP gain

  28. Currently, I’d be very surprised if Labour can save it.

  29. I am gaining a stronger by the day whiff of complacency and underestimation of the SNP surge in Scotland coming from Labour supporters…I wonder what the polls are saying after the TV debate held the other night.

  30. Narrow Labour Hold

  31. The SNP have made some pretty sturdy advances around Falkirk and West Lothian. Should another referendum come along this area would likely vote in favour of independence.

    Currently I believe the following councils would vote in favour of independence in the event of a second referendum on Scottish independence:
    * Dundee City
    * East Ayrshire
    * Falkirk
    * Glasgow City
    * Inverclyde
    * North Ayshire
    * North Lanarkshire
    * West Dunbartonshire
    * West Lothian
    * Western Isles

    On the edge:
    * Angus [leaning Yes]
    * Clackmannanshire [leaning No]
    * Midlothian [leaning No]
    * Renfrewshire [leaning No]
    * South Lanarkshire [leaning No]

    * Aberdeen City
    * Aberdeenshire
    * Argyll and Bute
    * City of Edinburgh
    * Dumfries and Galloway
    * East Dunbartonshire
    * East Lothian
    * East Renfrewshire
    * Fife
    * Highland
    * Moray
    * Orkney Islands
    * Perth and Kinross
    * Scottish Borders
    * Shetland Islands
    * South Ayrshire
    * Stirling

    I believe that the vote would remain around the same to 2014 in Orkney, Shetland, Argyll & Bute, Scottish Borders and South Ayrshire (which have shown the strongest signs of the No vote holding up).

    Realistically for the Yes side to win a referendum on independence they would need to sweep across central belt: failing to take working class council areas such as Clackmannanshire, Renfrewshire and South Lanarkshire isn’t good enough.

  32. * No vote remaining around the same in Highland as well.

  33. I would review those “on the edge” local authority areas to:

    Leaning No:
    * Highland
    * Moray

    Too close to call:
    * Clackmannanshire
    * Fife
    * Midlothian

    Leaning Yes:
    * Renfrewshire
    * South Lanarkshire

  34. Rhea Wolfson reselected here.

  35. “Rhea Wolfson reselected here”
    Personally I think this is a good choice, she’s left wing but not a crank. The Labour left need more like her.

  36. Yeah a good person generally that didn’t deserve to hounded out of Eastwood

  37. This is a more winnable seat for her anyway. Very difficult to win Eastwood from third place – I think the best they could hope for in seats like that is to finish second ahead of the SNP, so then they could pick up tactical SNP votes to topple the Tories.

  38. Will be interesting to see what happens the Conservative vote in central belt seats next time.

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